Wymondham is back to having two operational railway stations. The public can once again catch a train from the Mid-Norfolk Railway's Wymondham Abbey Station north to Dereham, following a longer than planned line closure due to engineering issues on a section of the track that have now been resolved.
The trains will be a mix of heritage diesel hauled trains, steam hauled, or Diesel Multiple Units depending on the timetable and the weather. Steam hauled services are planned for weekends but will not be run however if the weather remains hot and the surrounding line side is still dry and parched due to the risk of lineside fires.
During hot weather periods the Class 47 number 47580 “County of Essex” in its special Queen’s Platinum Jubilee livery is likely to be used if the railway’s resident BR Standard Class 4 Tank engine 80078 is unable to run.
Charlie Robinson, the Chairman of the Railway, said: “We know our passengers will be disappointed by the non-running of our steam engines but we, like all major heritage railways, have made the decision that we are not prepared to take the risk of causing a line side fire due to a spark from a steam engine. There have been two fires near our line that we are aware of so far. Both were due to non-railway related causes, but the risk is very much there.”
Amongst the tourist and train enthusiasts travelling on one train recently was Mary Stolworthy from Toftwood, Dereham, she said: “I like to use the train to get to Wymondham to visit my daughter Michelle, it has been disappointing not to use the train this year as I normally travel several times a year. I could take the bus, but I have to change and this is nicer and so it is good it is back, I just have to make sure I catch the last train back!”
The railway is aware that many locals and visitors to the town enjoy a walk around the area of the station, but request that everyone take care when trains are running. The railway has provided a viewing area next to the level crossing and the public are encouraged to use this facility.
Full details of the Mid-Norfolk Railway's timetable is available on the railway’s website www.midnorfolkrailway.co.uk. The railway is also running its popular Breckland Fryer Fish and Chip trains and also the Afternoon Tea Trains, details again on the website. Likewise, the very popular “Children Go Free” promotion is still running.